Former Students’ Union president and CEO wins The Amazing Race Canada

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Photo by: Heather Davidson

Former Students’ Union President and CEO, Sam Lambert concluded season five of The Amazing Race Canada with a first place victory.

Lambert and boyfriend Paul Mitskopoulos, teamed up and became the first gay male couple to win The Amazing Race Canada.

“Paul and I knew that we were extremely lucky to even be given the experience to compete,” Lambert said.

“And to have gone through the six weeks of filming and come out on top is surreal.”

“In order for any team to win the Amazing Race you need to have really strong communication so I think that Paul and I definitely encompassed that,” said Lambert.

This season highlighted Canada’s 150th birthday and took contestants across the country where they competed against other teams in both mental and physical challenges.

Both Lambert and Mitskopoulos grew up watching The Amazing Race and had always talked about joining the competition. The couple finally got the opportunity to share both high and low moments with viewers and it taught them how to operate as a team at their highest level.

“The hardest challenge for us to overcome as a team would probably be stubbornness. We’re both type A, Alpha males, so each one of us think we know what’s best for the team and I think it was kind of recognizing one person’s opinion … was something we learned as we went on,” Lambert said.

Teamwork and communication quickly became a crucial aspect in order to persevere throughout the season.

“In order for any team to win the Amazing Race you need to have really strong communication so I think that Paul and I definitely encompassed that,” said Lambert.

Lambert said that being a former Students’ Union President and CEO taught him a lot of skills he was able to apply to the race.

“You have to be thinking on your feet, problem solve and be able to focus on specific challenges and I think a lot of those skills I gained from being president,” Lambert said.

During filming Lambert found out about his recent acceptance into McMaster University’s Medical School. He got to share this emotional and exciting achievement with fellow cast members, and he admitted that it was a personal highlight of the season.

Along with the first place victory, the couple was happy to share their experience as a gay couple and viewed this as an opportunity to get a message out to young men and women who may be struggling with their sexuality.

“I’m most proud of Paul, he only came out probably a year ago, so when we were filming it was probably six months in and it was a very public way to announce your sexuality on national television,” said Lambert about his partner.

“I think anytime you can have a couple or someone that represents a community that might be struggling it’s never a bad thing,” Lambert said.

“To represent the gay community and help any young people around the country who might be struggling with their sexuality; it’s the ultimate honour.”

The couple is now looking forward to the many travel opportunities ahead, which they won on the show.

In addition to the trip around the world, they also won trips to Rio de Janeiro, China, Costa Rica, Cape Town and New Orleans. Lambert looks forward to taking the time to be a tourist in the cities he will soon visit.

“Paul and I are probably the most excited to go to China, on the race we were at the Great Wall very briefly, so it will be really nice to go back to China, and see a little more than we would have when we were racing,” Lambert said.

“[Actually] experience it rather than being stressed and running around.”

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